Are you interested in purchasing a vacation rental home on Lake Travis? Or, do you presently own a home and have considered turning it into a rental property? JW Properties specializes in waterfront property and we give our clients all the information they need to establish their own vacation rental business.
Vacation rental homes are a growing lodging option for travelers in North America and across the world. Representing a wonderful value for families, couples and groups, vacation rentals allow travelers to stay under one roof while providing considerably more space and, in many instances, amenities not found in one’s own home or expensive hotels.
There are huge benefits to owning a vacation rental home. You can not only reserve time for you and your family, but you can also make significant income by renting your home to others. There are major tax benefits such as being able to depreciate your home while deducting maintenance and repair costs, new furnishings, operating expenses which include phone service, cable TV, internet service, utilities, lawn service, pool maintenance, dock maintenance, insurance, trash pickup and HOA dues. You also have the usual tax deductions of property taxes and interest expense. Of course, everyone's situation is different and you need to consult with your CPA to see which tax write offs you will qualify for.
Why use a management company?
When renting from a management company, guests enjoy additional benefits and services that are not typically offered by homeowners who manage their own property, such as a 24-hour emergency contact, housekeeping, and partnerships with local vendors. If a vacation home is not managed, the individual homeowner is responsible for the property’s maintenance, upkeep, and the customer service offered to renters, often as an absentee owner from other states or even countries abroad. Management companies handle all of this for individual homeowners, ensuring consistency and quality in both customer service and the level of accommodations.
How do you select a rental management company?
Selecting the best vacation rental management company is a very important decision. Communication and responsiveness are key components in any successful business partnership and certainly apply to a property management program. Jackie, the owner of JW Properties, has been managing her own Lake Travis waterfront vacation rental for 7 years, and she knows how to effectively advertise and manage vacation rental homes. She is a hands-on property manager that will help you earn a significant return on your investment while making sure you have quality people renting your property that genuinely appreciate you opening your home to them. In the previous 7 years, Jackie has only kept one security deposit for damage to her property. This is a testament to her method of screening potential renters. She cares who rents her property and she will care who rents yours. The vacation rental business on Lake Travis and Lake Austin is booming! In 2008, she rented her home, Lago Vista 1, for 207 days and had gross rental income of $90,250 on a 4 bedroom, 3 bath, 2700 square foot home located in Lago Vista. Even in a depressed economy, she grossed $85,730 in 2009. (Villa Soleil)
References of our current property owners are available upon request.
What does a management company do for you?
Extensive and consistent marketing is a key component to obtaining continued growth, high occupancy rates and rental revenue. The internet has become a critical marketing resource for reaching potential guests globally. The website (www.LakeTravisRental.net) generates 49% of our renters. It is the first website that comes up on the internet when a person searches “Lake Travis rental.” If you hire our company, your home will be placed on the website. With the website, guests can learn all about the Lake Travis and Lake Austin area and view any of our rental properties. Each property in our rental program is displayed in full color with the description and its amenities. It also includes links to individual websites, virtual tours, etc. Search engine interfaces and sponsored links, cooperative website links, and statistical analysis are all part of our on-going campaign to utilize the latest techniques and technology to maximize rentals. Your home will also be listed on VRBO.com & Homeaway.com. You will choose from a list of domain names that we currently own and a website for your property will also be set up and linked to VRBO.com, Homeaway.com, LakeTravisRental.net & JWProperties.net.
- Advice on Setting Up Your Home as a Rental
We will evaluate your home and make suggestions as to what would improve your home’s rental appeal and what supplies and amenities you will need.
We will handle all reservations, which will include screening prospective tenants. We have an organized system of collecting rental payments and security deposits.
- Competitive Pricing
It is our objective to identify the optimum pricing structure for each home that will maximize its rental income potential. Continuous monitoring of market conditions helps us determine optimal rate levels and identify opportunities to increase rates. Recommendations for rates are made for each property in our program after reviewing the rates of similar homes in comparable locations, both within and outside our rental program.
Immediate Response To All Contacts
Being responsive is the most important aspect of this business. All rental requests will be answered promptly. After the initial email, each prospect will be contacted by phone to screen them to insure that they will be responsible, conscientious renters. They will be reminded of the maximum occupancy limit and that any violation of this limit will be met with the forfeiture of their security deposit.
- Housekeeping Services
Housekeeping is the single greatest obstacle faced by vacation rental owners. Our exclusive cleaning staff is the best in the vacation rental business. Careful supervision and management will insure that your home is thoroughly cleaned to the highest standards.
- Upkeep and Maintenance
We will conduct periodic inspections of the property and make recommendations for such things as replenishing kitchen inventory, carpet cleaning, painting or adding guest-requested furnishings, supplies or amenities. We will recommend, schedule & supervise all repair and maintenance work.
- Regulation of Tenants
We will assure that tenants comply with rental policies and procedures.
- Guest Comment Cards/Thank You Letter
We always ask for feedback from our clients. This helps us identify things in the home that might need to be added, repaired or replaced. Positive reviews to be added to the websites are requested from clients. Thank you letters are sent to every renter within 2 weeks after they check-out.
- Technical details & Liabilities
We will assist you in attaining information on liability, fire, theft and other insurance for rental properties.
- 24 Hour Emergency Contact
24-Hour customer service will be available to the tenants. If there is any problem the client will contact us, not you.
We offer hands-on supervision and control and will communicate with you often.
- Management Fees
Since we get paid only if your house is rented, we are highly motivated to maximize the rental potential of every property. The base management fee covers the cost of rental program management, marketing, accounting, reservation processing, supervision and scheduling of maintenance and housekeeping, check-in and check-out procedures and security deposit disposition.
- Monthly Statements
We provide detailed and accurate monthly statements. The statements include rental activity, income and itemized expenses. Statements and checks are mailed out by the first of each month for the previous month. Payments can also be directly deposited in your bank account.
- Quarterly Occupancy Tax Returns
We collect the occupancy tax from all renters and prepare the quarterly or monthly tax returns for the Texas Comptroller. We will also prepare any city occupancy tax returns.
Your tenants are your/our guests, and we strive to treat them as such. The success of our mutual business depends on a high level of customer satisfaction which translates to repeat/referral business and maximum rental income. Our guests are on vacation and they expect an enjoyable and trouble-free experience beginning with the first contact with our company.
If you are interested in establishing a Lake Rental Vacation Home or you have one and are currently using another property management company but aren't happy with the way your property is being managed, please give us a call. We would love to help you. We provide personal attention to both the owners and their guests!
Jacqueline Wittmuss, Broker
Jacqueline Wittmuss, Broker
5611 Hwy 290 West
Austin, TX 78735
The information herein has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable. However, no investigation has been made to determine the accuracy of such information. No person or entity should rely on the accuracy of this material without conducting a thorough, independent investigation of same. JW Properties has no liability expressed or implied relating to this information.